Do you want to get rid of abdominal fat? Are you trying to eliminate the fat that accumulates in the stomach area? Does it seem that you accumulate fat in your abdomen naturally? If any of those questions resonated with you, then you are like many other people who are struggling to shed belly fat that seems to cling to you or grow larger no matter what you try.
Fortunately, losing weight and fat is science. Specifically, it is biology, and much research over the years has told us exactly how to do it in the most effective way. Here’s how fitness experts reveal the 7 best ways to get rid of belly fat.
1. Eat healthy fats
Eating fat to lose fat sounds counterintuitive, but it works, as long as you opt for healthy fats. Unsaturated fats, namely polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fats, are your best option. These fats make you feel full faster and provide many more positive beneficial, but most of all, they are good for helping you lose visceral fat and belly fat.
Yasi Ansari, National Medical Spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, A certified sports dietitian and registered dietitian recommends adding healthy fats in moderation to regular meals. They are high in calories so you can’t get too many, but they do increase satiety and are great for your health when done correctly.
- Olive oil
But then what fats should you avoid? Trans fats are the worst of the bunch and are made by putting hydrogen into unsaturated fats. Commonly found in spreads, soybean oil, and margarine, they are so bad for you that many producers and manufacturers have discontinued their use in their products entirely!
Trans fats have not only been linked to multiple life-threatening illnesses, but they also increase belly fat. A study found that consuming diets rich in trans fat can increase belly fat by 33%. To avoid trans fats, eat healthy unsaturated fats in moderation and you will lose that belly weight over time.
2. Control your consumption
Losing fat is all about math. That’s why tracking your intake and exercise can be a helpful way to reach your goals. If you don’t have a problem with being obsessed with numbers, this is a good way to become more aware of what you eat and the work you put into losing fat.
American Council on Exercise Certified Personal Trainer Chris Gagliardi He explains that by burning 500 calories more than usual for a week, he would burn 3,500 calories that week in deficit, causing a loss of one pound of fat. Gagliardi says that while counting calories is the easiest way to be sure of what you are doing, you don’t have to do the math – cutting portions or adding 30 minutes to a workout and being mindful of those changes can work too.
As an individual, you can decide how fast you want to lose weight and how much you want to cut back from your daily diet or add to your exercise after that. Keeping a food diary has been found to increase weight loss progress and make the process more positive In terms of results, consider finding a way to track it, be it through pen and paper, app, or some other method.
Exercise is a wonderful way to slowly shed belly fat and is much more sustainable than a restrictive diet. Adding exercise to your routine means you’ll be healthier overall and is a better way to pursue long-term fat loss that maintains weight.
Kerry Stewart, director of clinical and research physiology at Johns Hopkins explains that exercise is so effective because it promotes so many results for so little time exchanged. It is also especially effective on abdominal fat because exercise lowers insulin levels, indicating that the body does not need to retain fat.
Here are some great exercise options to try:
If you are trying to lose belly fat, you should work to gain lean muscle in the stomach area. There is no way to reduce fat in certain parts of your body, but you can build muscle in specific areas. NASM Certified Personal Trainer Chris DiVecchio recommends choosing to do ab workouts several times a week non-consecutively, choosing workouts that target the muscles of the abdomen and sides.
Certified diabetes educator and Franziska Spritzler, Registered Dietitian states that cardio or aerobic exercise is a great way to burn calories quickly while improving health. It has often been found to be among the most effective types of exercises to lose belly fat out there, and the results have been clearly revealed in studies.
Spritzler also recommends this form of resistance training. Studies that focus on people with metabolic diseases show that abdominal fat loss can be achieved through training. Some studies they even show that a combination of strength and aerobic exercise leads to greater visceral fat loss than other exercise methods.
Simply walking can help reduce visceral fat even in low levels or amounts, he says investigation. Gagliardi claims that walking is a common entry exercise for many, and even starting with just a minute of walking and leveling up can help. Start slow and take a little walk each day, increasing the amount as you get used to it.
Fiber, especially soluble fiber, is crucial for satiety and is a great way to better manage your portions. You may have noticed that sugars and refined carbohydrates don’t keep you full for long, and that’s precisely why – they lack fiber.
Chair of the Department of Food and Nutrition Studies at George Mason University Dr. Lawrence Cheskin, MD., states that fiber slows down digestion, which is what makes you feel full faster.
Studies have found that soluble fiber makes you eat less, reduces the calories your body absorbs from food, and helps you lose weight. Even better, investigation indicates that for every 10 grams added to soluble fiber intake, abdominal fat gain decreases by 3.7%.
Some good sources of soluble fiber are:
- Brussels sprouts
- Flax seeds
- Shirataki noodles
5. Get more sleep
Few people realize the great role sleep can play in the success of a weight loss plan. Cheskin claims that sleeping too little is significantly worse for weight loss than getting enough or even sleeping too much. It would be better if you slept around 8 hours a night, at least.
Studies have shown that people who sleep less tend to eat more to maintain their energy levels, concentration and positive thinking during the day. They also tend to make worse calorie choices, as your body craves certain unhealthy quick fixes found in junk food. It also means they are awake longer and therefore hungrier and often have less energy to exercise.
This, of course, affects belly fat too, as all of the aforementioned bad habits performed by those who lack sleep often contribute to abdominal accumulation. If you get enough sleep but still feel very tired during the day, this can also contribute to the problem, and you should get checked for a sleep disorder.
6. Eat more protein
You’ve probably heard a lot about using protein for “gains” in the gym, but there’s a reason it’s so important in the fitness world. Protein can:
- Accelerate muscle recovery so you can exercise your muscles more often
- Increases feelings of fullness, so you eat smaller portions and don’t give in to cravings
- Increase your metabolic rate to burn fat faster
- Helps with muscle growth and retention, so your workouts produce better results.
Spritzler highlights the importance of protein in weight management and also discusses how most people who consume higher levels of protein enjoy greater positive Perspective on Fat Loss. Research has shown that those who eat high-protein diets tend to have lower levels of abdominal fat overall.
Here are some great protein options:
- Cow meat
- Whey protein
7. Learn to manage stress
Did you know that being stressed can make you gain fat around the abdomen? According to Spritzler, this is because when you are stressed, it triggers a component in the body known as the adrenal glands. These glands then produce a stress hormone known as cortisol.
When you’re rarely stressed, cortisol comes in handy. It is intended to perform during fight or flight situations. It works by putting your body into survival mode to fully focus on the situation that is causing you stress.
The problem is that “survival mode” means that the body is retaining fat to survive. When stress is rare, this is not a big problem. But when your stress is constant, chronic, or prolonged, it means that you are storing belly fat indefinitely.
Worse still, this constant stress can lead to long-term imbalances in cortisol production, making it harder to lose that weight later. Basically, if you don’t start learning to manage stress and increase your positive thinking, it will be even more difficult to eliminate abdominal fat when you want.
There is an additional psychological problem with stress, of course: You are more likely to want to eat unhealthy foods and give in to cravings when stressed. It is a psychological game and it is much easier to “win” if you start working to find ways to relax.
Many people want to lose belly fat, and if you do, there are many healthy and sustainable ways to start. Avoid “quick” solutions like crash diets or “fad” options like waist trainers. These won’t work in the long run, can backfire, and can even damage you.
Losing belly fat is a lot easier than you might think, with many recommended and science-backed methods increasing sustainability and ease. You can make these changes in your life at your own pace and without interrupting your entire world, and that’s what makes travel doable!